Dec 18, 2012 7:00pm PST
kidnapped five days ago in syria, but there's good news. they are free tonight. abc's richard engel and his crew were traveling with a group of syrian rebels when gunman sympathetic to the syrian government attacked them. now they are free. earlier richard engel spoke to the turkish media. >> the last five days were very difficult. we're very happy to be out. we're very happy to be back in turkey. we love being here. we love this country. we appreciate all the help. the last five days are some days that we would hear forget. if you can understand, we just came out now. we haven't even left yet. we're very tired. so we'll probably be talking more in the coming days. thank you for being here. thanks to everyone. we're really happy. >> greta: engle and his crew were not hurt physically during the ordeal, but they were mentally tortured and explained the traumatic teens on "the today show." >> a group of gunmen literally jumped out of the trees and bushes on the side of the road. there were probably 15 gunmen. they were wearing ski masks. they were heavily armed. they dragged us out of the car.
Dec 18, 2012 9:00pm PST
when we saw it. it's nbc's chief foreign correspondent richard engel, looking a little disheveled, a little less groomed than usual, but as you can see, looking like himself. on the left this is ghazi balkiz and john klooister, a long-time nbc news photographer. these three men were able to appear live on the "today" show, fife days after being kidnapped and held in captivity in syria. just hours before this shot of them this morning, they were freed by a syrian rebel group who rescued them from an unknown group that had taken them and that had held them for five, long, horrible days. the rebel group not only rescued these three, they then took responsibility for driving them to the border and getting them safely out of syria. they were in syria in the first place to cover the war there. this is footage of richard's last piece for nbc news before the kidnapping happened. richard and his team are veterans in this field. they've been working together for a decade in just about every corner of the world you can imagine, including long stints covering the war in iraq. also the war in
Dec 19, 2012 2:05am EST
's world. >> always. >> talk about some good news today, you guys. >> yeah. >> richard engel is an nbc -- he is our chief foreign correspondent. >> brilliant reporter. >> he was snatched really in syria, i think it was on wednesday, so there have been several days where he had been missing, and i know his -- >> his camera crew and producer, right? >> right. they kept it -- they were really trying to keep it sort of quiet so they could get this thing resolved. the good news was he was ultimately released, and what he went through sounded -- he and his crew sounded so harrowing. they were taken by who we think is bashar al assad's guys. they were blindfolded, and they were bound, and all this kind of stuff. richard describes a little bit about what happened. let's take a listen. >> they kept us blindfolded, bound. we weren't physically beaten or tortured. there was a lot of psychological torture. threats of being killed. they made us choose which one of us would be shot first, and when we refused, there were mock shootings. they pretended to shoot gazi several times when you were blindfo